Healing by the Forests - Healing for the Forests
International Forest Therapy Days Mission
We understand that forests are key to sustaining life, health and wellbeing and are homes to
biodiversity. We envision a world in future:
WHO WE ARE
We are an inclusive community advocating for forests and people, and the bond between the two. We are driven by our passion for the planet’s natural world and are committed to healing and restoration. We underline the fulfillment that comes from life lived in connection with nature. We put our (planetary) health mission first and embrace a life of moderation. Established in 2018 as a private, not-for-profit initiative, we gather together individuals representing a variety of disciplines from science and practice. We also draw inspiration from the richness of cultural backgrounds of people engaging in forest therapy in their own ways and in different types of forests around the world.
We meet in person once a year to share ideas, experiences, practices and research, to advance our thinking and synergize our efforts.
There is much healing work to be done, with room for many kinds of thoughtful and sincere measures. IFTDays is a Common Cause Effort that allows multiple organizations, initiatives and stakeholders to further their own causes, using IFTDays as a hub for continuing and synergistic learning. We are united around a common vision of forest therapy for health promotion and disease prevention, and we grow our network to amplify our message of sustainable health. We challenge the society, health care systems and institutions to think and act differently. We engage people from different domains, disciplines and belief systems to be part of a supportive community that raises awareness about the benefits of forests for human health and well-being. We invite individuals and groups who base their activities in the forests, to join us in creating and supporting responsible, respectful and evidence-based traditions and practices. We encourage and enable the seeds of new positive ideas and energy for creative change from the IFTDays community to transform into ripples that spread out into the world.
We share and apply the following values in our planning and in our work:
We work to the highest ethical and professional standards. We are transparent and accountable to our partners and our own community. We are honest, authentic and respectful in our discussions and efforts. We earn trust within our community and with others by living up to our commitments to our values and our mission.
Respecting each other:
Diversity: Within the small and large scale forest therapy traditions, a wealth of wisdom exists. The many forest therapy communities can learn from each other, enriching their individual practices while finding unity in their diversity; there can also be strength of spirit and purpose and effectiveness in numbers. We are all equals. We respect the needs, values and culture of each individual in our community and of local communities with which we interact.
Equality: We are non-hierarchical but appreciate experience, engagement and wisdom. We believe in respect for all as “everyone’s story is unique but everyone’s story is the same”.
No competition: We work in the spirit of collaboration. We celebrate each other’s successes and those beyond our community.
Safe space for all: We believe that bringing people together can build our communities’ collective resiliency and hope for the future, supporting the well-being of individuals and fostering a sense of true belonging. We require no strict membership. Rather, membership and inclusion are based on alignment with our vision and values, and on following best practices.
Supporting evidence based forest therapy practices:
We are guided and inspired to develop future best practices by sound evidence about current best research and practices. We are committed to continuous learning, and to finding practical, resourceful and innovative solutions to knowledge exchange.
We are a safe haven for the friends of the forest.
IFTDays is happy to see more friends join our community.
IFTDays is also seeking funding and collaborating supporters to enable the participation of those with lesser means.